In reminiscing about the ways I spent my time in childhood, I realize how many wonderful and lasting lessons are best learned through play … even today as I approach my 67th birthday, which is coming up quickly in just two months. Songs like
‘Row, Row, Row Your Boat’ and dances like the ‘Hokey Pokey’ convey deep meaningful and practical truths to children that we tend to overlook as adults until we see them through a symbolic, universal perspective for the miracles they are.
Stop for a moment to consider what you loved doing most as a child, and when you last engaged in that … or a comparable activity. I’d love to know what’s running through your mind as you read this, and invite you to share in comments below if you’re willing and have the time.
I wasn’t much for ‘organized group games’ like ‘Simon Says’ or ‘Red Rover Come Over’ or ‘Duck Duck Goose’ … but I did enjoy an occasional game of tetherball or four square and I loved playing on the ‘rings & monkey bars’ by myself on playgrounds. At home, I engaged primarily in individual creative play using my imagination to ride through the prairie on horseback, travel the world by train, and live in remote places out in the countryside. I disappeared for hours and days into books which whisked me away to faraway lands where amazing adventures transpired, and I could be a silent observer of it all … savoring the experiences vicariously from a safe distance.
I much preferred individual pursuits like swimming, dancing, and tennis to team sports. Family, school, church and community activities took precedence in my life and the ‘tribal truths’ of shared beliefs and behaviors shaped my life, pulling me away from the desires of my heart until, in my mid-40s, a series of life experiences shattered my worldview … after which I embarked on an individualistic journey looking within myself for answers to unspoken questions of my heart. Pouring these onto the page with my pencil privately in my journal … sharing with no one … saved my sanity and gradually restored my spirit.
Last week as I helped a friend purchase domain names online, I realized that I’ve been dancing at the edge of the threshold for almost 11 years now … since retiring from my job as a public school teacher in June of 2001. In numerology ’11’ is a gateway and methinks it’s time for me to step through the portal into the adventures ahead with child-like zest and eagerness … trusting that I’m ready for whatever awaits and that invisible support is always available to us when we ask. We need but BREATHE deeply as we stop, look, and listen … then act with faith on whatever guidance arises from within.
I posted this image and affirmation recently at Facebook with great gratitude after it was shared by Darlene Hamrick. I add both here as a declaration of my readiness as an invitation to you to do likewise if you dare.
I’ll try to publish my 2011 Labyrinth Christmas card very soon, and will be writing here at least weekly from now on … so watch for what comes next and let me hear from you, because I really want to create a community here and at Labyrinth Journal too.